In recent weeks, a series of events have brought suicide to the forefront of the public debate. The subject was highlighted by a recent CDC report, which found suicide in the US increased by more than 25 percent since 1999. According to the report, suicide rose in nearly every state in the country. The report also found that suicides increased by more than 30 percent in over half of states, and about 45,000 people died from suicide in 2016 alone. The suicides of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain put a pair of well-known faces to these alarming numbers, and the public mourning that followed these deaths prompted not just reminiscences of the lives lost, but renewed efforts to understand the intractable, unpredictable public health hazard that claimed them.
Suicide is one of the very few causes of death that have remained stubbornly steady over nearly the past century. A recent CDC report showed that suicide rates have risen about 30% in the United States since 1999. This report revealed an increase among all sexes, racial/ethnic groups, and all ages; in 2016 there were nearly 45,000 suicides in the US. With the recent increase adding fuel to our concern, suicide is now the tenth leading cause of death in the country.